Teach the Truth Tours

The Miami Center for Racial Justice was established in the aftermath of the killing of George Floyd to preserve and teach Florida’s difficult stories of racial violence, discrimination, and oppression especially to young people so that their voices will carry the stories forward to future generations. To that end, the Miami Center for Racial Justice will conduct Teach the Truth Tours for high school students from Miami Dade County to locations in Florida where major instances of anti-black violence have occurred.

The first Teach the Truth Tour will be led by Dr. Marvin Dunn and will take place between January 7 and 8, 2023 to mark the 100 years remembrance of the Rosewood Massacre of 1923. A racially diverse group of twenty-five secondary-level students will travel by bus each with a parent or grandparent from Miami to three sites in Florida where racial violence has occurred. Those locations are Mims, Newberry Rosewood. On the return trip to Miami the tour may include a drive-through of Ocoee where a race riot took place in 1920 over the effort by blacks to vote. All expenses for the trip will be covered by the Center. Participants will be selected from nominations that have been submitted by religious leaders in the community.

The group will depart Miami early on the morning of January 7, 2023, to arrive at the Harry T. Moore Museum in Mims where Moore and his wife were killed when a bomb was placed under their bedroom in 1951. Moore was the most important civil rights leader in Florida. The family home has been restored and a museum dedicated to the event now stands on the site.

The group will then travel to Newberry where, in 1916 the largest known lynching in Florida history occurred. They will visit Lynch Hammock where the lynching tree stood upon which several of the victims were hung and the Dudley Farm, now a state park. The Dudley family, the most powerful white family in the area, was intricately involved in the mass lynching. Reportedly, the ropes for the lynchings were prepared in the kitchen of this house. The group will attend a presentation by Janis Owens, an expert on the lynching and Newberry history.

The tour will then depart for Gainesville where they will have lodging at the Hilton University of Florida Conference Center. The next morning, Sunday, January 8, the group will visit Rosewood about forty miles west of Gainesville where they will attend the Remembrance Ceremony by Rosewood descendants which will be held on property that is owned by Dr. Dunn. Following the event, the group will depart Rosewood for the Ocoee drive-through and home arriving that evening at about 11 PM.

Students will be given a copy of “A History of Florida Through Black Eyes” by Dr. Marvin Dunn. The tour will be filmed with parental consent so that the experience can be shared widely on social media and in Florida classrooms.